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Election Odds – Debating the First Debate

Larry Houser

by Larry Houser in Entertainment

Updated Jan 17, 2018 · 9:39 AM PST

Monday’s debate figures to be the most-watched presidential showdown in history, Monday Night Football or no Monday Night Football.

Will Hillary Clinton, fresh from a bout of pneumonia, take a page out of Reagan’s 1984 debate book and put to rest any doubts that she’s physically fit enough for the job?

Can Donald Trump keep it together for 90 minutes and convince any voter still on the fence that he can act presidential when he’s in the mood to do so?

There’s so much at stake. If there is a life after death, you can bet John Kennedy and Richard Nixon – who started the presidential TV debate ball rolling in 1960 – will be getting together at a local watering hole to watch it all go down.

Who’s going to “win” tomorrow’s debate? Will Hillary last the night? What color toupee, I mean tie, will Trump don?

It’s time to set the odds on all that and more!

Presidential Debate Odds

Which candidate will get a bigger bump in the Quinnipiac poll that directly follows the debate

Trump: 10/11

Clinton: 11/10

Clinton is the more experienced (and better) debater. But Quinnipiac polls have been under fire for allegedly over-sampling white voters. Slight edge to Trump.

Odds a Trump protester disrupts the debate: 9/1

Odds a Trump supporter disrupts the debate: 8/1

Odds that Clinton retires or withdraws from the debate before its scheduled end: 22/1

Bathroom breaks don’t count.

Odds San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick is mentioned during the debate: 1/1

Surely the nation wants to know where the candidates stand on protesting during the anthem. Kaepernick started the trend, but it’s become ubiquitous enough that he doesn’t need to be mentioned by name.

Odds of which candidate Lester Holt fact-checks more during the debate

Trump: 1/4

Clinton: 4/1

This is a bone of contention for the Clinton camp, which points to Trump’s almost constant misstatements and exaggerations. Clinton is hoping that Holt calls out Trump early and often.

Odds that Trump complains about the fairness of moderator Lester Holt during or following the debate: 2/1

Voters aren’t hungry for sour grapes. Even Trump knows that now.

Odds Trump brings up Clinton’s health/stamina during the debate: 1/7

Odds Clinton brings up Trump’s alleged ties to Russia during the debate: 1/3

Odds Trump brings up Bill Clinton’s infidelities during the debate: 6/1

Odds the word “Skittles” is used during the debate (by a candidate or moderator): 3/1

Odds of which Clinton scandal/issue Trump refers to most often during the debate

Email server: 2/1

Clinton Foundation: 3/1

Benghazi: 4/1

Health: 4/1

Odds of which Trump scandal/issue Clinton refers to most often during the debate

Bankruptcies: 2/1

Tax returns: 2/1

Trump Foundation: 6/1

Trump University: 6/1

Last spring the Clinton camp reported that it planned to attack Trump’s business acumen, but so far there have been few direct hits. Now could be the time for a salvo.

Odds on the color of Donald Trump’s tie

Red: 9/5

Blue: 2/1

Green: 5/1

Yellow: 7/1

FIELD (including striped): 20/1

Odds on the color of Hillary Clinton’s pantsuit

Blue: 3/1 25

Black: 4/1 20

White: 5/1  16

Multi-colored: 7/1

Red: 16/1

FIELD: 4/1

Photo credit: Krassotkin (derivative), Gage Skidmore (Donald Trump) [CC BY-SA 3.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0)], via Wikimedia Commons.

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